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Comment: Well it makes sense (Score 2) 714

For one, Slashdot has a bunch of anti-social jerks that like to post, who have an inability to empathize with anyone else. So no surprise they think something like that is a good idea, because they they aren't very reasonable people.

However others have pointed out, accurately I think, that something like this can well be a cause for it. The thing is that if you push someone in to a corner and give them what seems to be no way out, no way to fight back, they may go nuts. Happens with other animals, not just humans. So if you have a kid that is continually picked on, who tries to stand up for themselves, but is then picked on even worse, this time by law enforcement, well then they may well take drastic measures because they feel like there's no option, no hope.

I think there is some real merit to this. Not merit as in saying it is good that kids do it, but that it is correct that actions like this can lead to kids doing it. If they feel they have nothing to lose and nowhere to turn, then a completely crazy overreaction may be the only option they feel they have.

I mean here you have a case of a kid who did everything right, and got increasingly screwed: He never fought back or defended himself, which schools do not allow (you can argue if they should, but they don't, it is against the rules). He got no help or support from the school, I mean it was allowed to happen IN CLASS in front of a teacher. He told his parents, they were skeptical, he produced evidence. He was then threatened by the police, ordered to delete it (illegally), drug to court, etc, etc. So what has he got now? He's been effectively told the bullies are allowed to do as they wish and if you attempt to stop them the police and courts will punish you.

So what's he to do? You can see how a drastic, illogical, action might be what he thinks is his only option. Remember that he doesn't have the perspective of age, he can't look on high school and say "Ya that's a real short time in your life and it gets WAY better once you are out and an adult." To him, this is his whole world. And for that matter, the adult world has stepped in and told him he;s wrong to try and make things better for himself.

As such you can see why people are saying it can lead to something like a school shooting. It is something that administrators need to consider: Dealing with bullying isn't something to do just because it is the right thing (which would be a good enough reason) but it is a safety issue as well.

Comment: No, they wouldn't (Score 1) 1263

by Sycraft-fu (#46769661) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

One of the problems with advanced weapons systems is they require a bunch of effort and facilities to produce, maintain, and use. So while they are fearsome, they are vulnerable to a large force that takes over their support structures.

For example while the US's combat planes are the most amazing the world has ever known, they only work when they have secure airfields to operate from. If those get taken over, they are in a world of shit. Which is why they have security but that security is men with guns. The planes can't defend their own airfields, for many reasons.

If you want to see it on a small scale, well ask yourself why the US has been unable to secure Afghanistan or Iraq. They had considerably more forces than your silly "1 aircraft carrier" scenario, it was hardly the whole population fighting, yet after years and years, they have been unable to secure the countries.

Lots of people with small arms are a force all of their own.

Comment: Also Netflix is willing to play nice (Score 1) 319

by Sycraft-fu (#46758787) Attached to: Netflix Gets What It Pays For: Comcast Streaming Speeds Skyrocket

They'll provide ISPs with cache engines for their content. That way, it doesn't use near as much bandwidth. Their content gets pushed to the cache engine, and that streams to the customer. It is win-win since both the ISP -and- Netflix get to use less bandwidth.

So it isn't like the ISPs can whine that Netflix is just too heavy a load. They can get cache engines and call it good. Netflix even picks up the cost of said cache engines near as I know.

Cox does this. They've had fast streaming and "super HD" for a long time because they have Netflix cache engines. Comcast is just being greedy.

Comment: Re:Surely ironic (Score 1) 272

Unfortunately, IFAICR, the updates did not appear to add features or remove bugs - they visibly added more and more DRM. Signed by Synmbian made it was insanely difficult to get apps installed from the start.

I still have, and use, Symbian 60 phones - the upgrade process means that I cannot actually move to a newer version. There have been no updates for years - and unfortunately - I cannot install any apps (or even re-install the old ones) because the signatures have expired and no one maintains them.

Disclaimer: I am a happy Cyanogenmod user.

Comment: Re:Useless (Score 1) 182

by Anne Thwacks (#46746091) Attached to: First Glow-In-the-Dark Road Debuts In Netherlands
In the UK, we have had "cats-eyes" since at least WW2. These are rubber blobs embedded in the road holding two glass beads that reflect your headlights back, showing the line down the centre of the road. On bigger roads, they are also used to mark the edge of the road, and on motorways, there are coloured ones (red/greeen) to show whether or not it is sensible to cross the line.

They seem to last about 20 years, and do the job brilliantly.

I have also seen "glow in the dark paint" before, but can't remember where (as in: which country), I think it was abandonned because it was not very good.

Comment: Can't do that and hit the price point (Score 1) 117

Hardware costs money. If you want cheap consoles, you have to trade things off. For example my PC has no problems rendering games like Titanfall at 60fps, even at resolutions beyond 1080 (2560x1600 in my case). So, just put that kind of hardware in a console right? Ya well, my GPU alone costs near double what a current console does, never mind the supporting hardware. It isn't feasible to throw that level of hardware at a console, it just costs too much.

That kind of thing has been tried in the past and it never worked. Remember the Neo-Geo? Had real arcade hardware (back when arcade units had better hardware than home systems) in it, far and above its contemporaries. However with a price equivalent to about $1100 today compared to its competitors which were about $350 in today's dollars it did very poorly.

The console makers had to make tradeoffs, and price was a big concern. Hence the somewhat limited hardware. Basically consoles are for people on a budget. They want something that plays games, but doesn't break the bank. So, the hardware in it has to be scaled accordingly. For those that want performance and are willing to for over more coin, the PC market is happy to oblige.

Comment: Re:No shit (Score 1) 103

by Sycraft-fu (#46740957) Attached to: Why the IETF Isn't Working

I'm not sure I agree on the honesty thing either. I see all types. Some are extremely honest, some are shady as hell. Heck we have some professors that basically just milk tenure. They don't teach, don't research, just sit around and collect a paycheck because it is too difficult to fire them. It really runs the gamut.

Comment: Re:No shit (Score 1) 103

by Sycraft-fu (#46739909) Attached to: Why the IETF Isn't Working

I like working in an academic environment, but getting shit done isn't the strong suit, particularly standards. You get a bunch of faculty on a committee and it'll take years to decide what to call the damn thing.

Just saying that the claim that the reason the IETF can't move fast is because of corporations as opposed to academics is silly.

Comment: No shit (Score 4, Interesting) 103

by Sycraft-fu (#46739063) Attached to: Why the IETF Isn't Working

You can hate on corporate types for various thing, but anyone who acts like academics know how to get anything done has never worked in academia. I work at a university and fuck me do we spend ages spinning our wheels, having meeting after endless meeting, discussing shit to death, and finally doing things 10 years after they needed to be done.

Speed is not what you find in an academic environment.

Comment: Yes and no (Score 3, Insightful) 117

So they are a bit different, hardware wise. A big difference is unified memory. There is only one pool of memory which both the CPU and GPU access. That's makes sense since the CPU and GPU are also on the same silicon, but it is a difference in the way you program. Also in the case of the Xbone they decided to use DDR3 RAM, instead of GDDR5, which is a little slow for graphics operations, but the APU (what AMD calls the CPU/GPU combo chips) has 32MB of high speed embedded RAM on it to try and buffer for that.

Ok so there are some differences. However that aside, why the problem with the target? Visual quality. Basically, a video card can only do so much in a given time period. It only can push so many pixels/texels, only run so many shaders, etc. So any time you add more visual flair, it takes up available power. There's no hard limit, no amount where it stops working, rather you have to choose what kind of performance you want.

For example if I can render a scene with X polygons in 16ms then I can output that at 60fps. However it also means that I can render a scene of 2X polygons in about 33ms, or 30fps.

So FPS is one tradeoff you can make. You don't have to render at 60fps, you can go lower and indeed console games often do 30fps. That means each frame can have more in it, because the hardware has longer to generate it.

Another tradeoff is resolution. Particularly when you are talking texture related things, lowering the output resolution lowers the demand on the hardware and thus allows you to do more.

So it is a tradeoff in what you think looks best. Ya, you can design a game that runs at 1080p60 solid. However it may not look as good overall as a game that runs at 720p30 because that game, despite being lower FPS and rez, has more detail in the scenes. It is a choice you have to make with limited hardware.

On the PC, we often solve it by throwing more hardware at the problem, but you can't do that on a console.

"There is hopeful symbolism in the fact that flags do not wave in a vacuum." --Arthur C. Clarke